Directions from a Blind Guy: What’s in a Title?

  Hey, my name is John Samuel and I’m the Cofounder and CEO of Ablr and the author of the book Don’t Ask the Blind Guy for Directions: a 30,000 mile journey for love, confidence, and a sense of belonging. 

The book is about my journey to hell and back, and I share stories and lessons that I learned along the way as I traveled the globe, all the while losing my sight.  

I didn’t realize how hard it was to produce a title of a book, until I had to myself! 

Since a large part of my book was about me navigating the world as someone who was losing their sight, I thought it was important to have something about it in the title.  

But everything I was told or read about developing a title was that it also needed to be a few words, and I also needed to think about Search Engine Optimization, or SEO, if I wanted people find it. 

While brainstorming with Tim at Book Launchers on the title, we found ourselves at a standstill. The traditionally correct titles just didn’t convey what I wanted to share. 

We had narrowed down the subtitle, which was something like “a blind man’s journey for love, confidence, and a sense of belonging,” but it had now been weeks and several hours of discussions without a title. 

Then one day, after over an hour and a half on the phone with Tim, I randomly blurted out “Don’t Ask a blind guy for directions, a 30 thousand mile journey for love confidence and a sense of belonging,” and he then said in a calm voice, I like that. I really like that. 

We hadn’t discussed this title, but at that moment, we both were like, this is it!  

There was some humor in it, which I wanted, and it touched on multiple aspects of the book, including the twists and turns I took to land back where I started.  

There wasn’t much more discussions to be had, because, we wanted to sleep on it, and I wanted my wife Nicole’s thoughts on it (which I know is not the thing you are supposed to do!) heck with the best practices, the title was like 7 words, so we were already breaking the rules for coming up with a good title! 

After a good night’s rest, I still liked it, and so did Nicole, so that was it! There were some minor tweaks afterwards, like realizing that I had gone over 30 thousand miles, but we had our title! 

I’m so thankful that I had Tim there to brainstorm with, because it was a long and tedious process, but I’m happy how it turned out!  

If you want to learn more about my book Don’t Ask the Blind Guy for Directions: A 30,000 mile journey for love, Confidence, and a Sense of Belonging, please visit 

Thanks so much! 


Directions from a Blind Guy: What’s in a Title?

by | Oct 25, 2022


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